CINCINNATI, Nov. 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- There are only a few weeks left in the holiday shopping season, and The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR), the nation's largest traditional grocery retailer, wants to remind its customers there are ways to save during the holidays. The company and its family of stores – Dillons, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's – today released a list of helpful, money-saving tips for customers. The tips were compiled by Kroger from a variety of sources, including its own associates, mom bloggers and frugal living experts.
- Buy gift cards, save on fuel: Nov. 20-Dec. 11, Kroger will offer quadruple fuel points on most gift cards sold at its One Stop Gift Card Shop. The fuel points can be redeemed for discounts of up to $1 at Kroger fuel centers and $0.10 on fuel at Shell stations. "A great way to stretch your holiday dollars is to stop by Kroger and purchase gift cards to use like cash, in order to save on fuel. We think it's an easy and rewarding way to kick off your holiday shopping season before heading out to the stores, especially before shopping on Black Friday," notes Kathy Kelly, president of Kroger Personal Finance.
- Pair coupons with sales: "Pairing coupons with sales is the best way to get the most for your money. Stockpile holiday cooking staples, using a coupon when they are on sale, so that you aren't running out to the store at the last minute and paying full price," says Marcy Robison, owner of couponing blog www.stretchingabuckblog.com.
- Look for "bundled" savings. Andrea Deckard, founder of the site SavingsLifestyle.com, recommends watching for store discount offers on turkeys and hams that are bundled with other staples. "Many will offer great discounts when you purchase other items during your shopping trip. This is also a great time to stock up so you can have inexpensive protein options available throughout the year."
- Plan the menu: "Planning allows you to identify the shelf-stable items you can buy in advance and the fresh foods to purchase just prior to your holiday meal," explains Margaret McClure, vice president of Kroger's bakery and deli operations. "This will help maximize every shopping trip and avoid the stress of running out to the store at the last minute."
- Search High and Low: Name brand items are usually placed at eye level, so be sure to check the shelves above and below to compare prices. And remember to pay attention to the price per unit, which will often drop when items are purchased in bulk," says Shannon Jarvies, who owns the popular blog www.mrsmoneysaver.com.
"Kroger tries to come up with different, creative ideas so our customers can make all of their celebrations unique and affordable," says Kelly. "Following these tips can be a great way for every customer to celebrate the holidays."
The tips couldn't come at a better time. According to the National Retail Federation's 2011 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions survey, released in October, 57 percent of consumers begin their holiday shopping in November and the first two weeks of December. And, limited budgets and a general wariness over the economy are driving consumers to seek out seasonal sales, discounts and other incentives to maximize their purchases.
Kroger's holiday gift card promotion falls into the latter category. The fuel points allow customers to save up to $1 per gallon at Kroger fuel centers nationwide, or up to $0.10 per gallon on gas purchased at Shell stations nationwide. The more points a customer accrues, the greater the rewards. For example, for every purchase of $50 in gift cards from Kroger's Gift Card Mall, customers will receive 200 fuel points. Those 200 points can be redeemed for $0.20 off per gallon at their local Kroger fuel center, or $0.10 off per gallon at two different fill-ups at the customer's local Shell station.
With dozens of retailers to choose from, such as Macy's, JCPenney, Sears, Starbucks, iTunes, Lowes, Gap and Old Navy, and Chili's, Kelly, believes every Kroger customer will find the right gift card to use – or give – this holiday season.
"The holiday quadruple gift card offer is just another way we offer meaningful savings to customers when they need it most," she says.
Some exclusions do apply, and the rewards offer may vary by market, so customers are encouraged to visit their local store for more information.
Kroger, the nation's largest traditional grocery retailer, employs more than 338,000 associates who serve customers in 2,439 supermarkets and multi- department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, City Market, Dillons, Jay C, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's. The company also operates 788 convenience stores, 361 fine jewelry stores, 1,046 supermarket fuel centers and 40 food processing plants in the U.S. Kroger, headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, focuses its charitable efforts on supporting hunger relief, health and wellness initiatives, and local organizations in the communities it serves. For more information about Kroger, please visit www.kroger.com.
SOURCE The Kroger Co.